The Ruffner Mountain Nature Center is being managed and operated by the Ruffner Mountain Nature Coalition, Inc., a non-profit organization founded in 1977. From the 28 original acres, the center now manages and/or owns over 1,000 acres of an undeveloped parcel of Birmingham, Alabama?s distinct Red Mountain Ridge, and has been linking nature and people for more than three decades.
The nature center is a special place within a bustling urban area where folks can come to learn to be good stewards of the planet, observing and caring for biologically diverse natural plant species and wildlife, preserving remnants of Birmingham?s historical mining heritage, and trekking tranquil and less inhabited forest trails situated less than an hour from downtown.
The Ruffner Mountain Nature Center aims to manage and protect Ruffner Mountain's land as a haven for native species of animals and plants. Its passive and informative recreational programs foster within the community an appreciation for the significance of the natural habitat and an understanding of the interdependence of all living things.
Conservation is a crucial piece of the mission of the center. It protects over 400 plants species, 150 species of animals, and is a valuable stopover for migratory birds. It also has several programs to protect both native flora and fauna. As part of Ruffner Mountain?s Conservation Plan, five biodiversity areas have been chosen that represents the different natural communities of the mountain region. Invasive species are eliminated from these areas and each plot is managed to maintain the biodiversity of that natural community type.
A trip to Ruffner Mountain Nature Center would be incomplete without a visit to the Alabama Animals. Most of these Animal Ambassadors live at Ruffner Mountain because they cannot survive in the wild. They are given food, shelter and medical assistance. Many also join in educational programs and help thousands of adults and school children learn more about the centers plant and animal species and how they can be protected in their natural habitats.
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